Marriage Bond – Thomas Pankey & Martha Cannon

Amanuensis[i] Monday
Howell-Pankey Line
By Don Taylor

TPhoto of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.his image is one of those cases where the document was extremely fragmented. But, by using similar documents it becomes fairly easy to fill in many of the gaps with what would be expected in a standard form. In this case, I put my supposed text into brackets [ ] and in purple. From other documents, I know the Bond was done by Thomas Pankey and James Johnson.

Document Image


Know All men                       [by these presents that we Thomas]
Pankey & Jms Johnson       [we hold and firm bound unto the]
Executive power of              [this state in the full sum of
Fifty pounds cu                     [current money of Virginia to such payment and
Really and truly                    [be made we bind our selves our each
of our heirs [accounts]         ___

These presents to our seals & da [ted this ___ day]
of Novemr – in the year of our L… ’85

The condition of this obligation is [such] that if their
is no lawful [cause] to obstruct a marriage intended
to be had and solemnized between the [above] bound
Thos Pankey & Martha Cannon.

Then this obligation to be Void also [in force]        Thomas ___
Sealed and delivered                                                           James Jo____
In Presence of  }
__ Payne          }


The date is obscured but is presumed to be November 1785 and before 25 November 1785 when Thomas and Martha were married. The Surety Bond was Fifty Pounds (£50)[ii].


[i] John Newmark started the “Amanuensis Monday” category in 2009 on his Blog,  Transylvanian Dutch  and many bloggers have followed suit using the tag. Google provides the following meaning for amanuensis: “A literary or artistic assistant, in particular one who takes dictation or copies manuscripts.”

[ii] Virginia switched from the Pound to the Dollar in 1793.


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